n African Renaissance - African refugee students' conceptions of democracy : implications for conflict mitigation

Volume 9 Number 3-4
  • ISSN : 1744-2532
  • E-ISSN: 2516-5305


This paper analyzes conceptions of democracy among 52 refugee students, randomly assigned into four groups, studying in universities in East African, by identifying what they prioritized as its vital attributes. The students were requested to listed, by consensus, the five top attributes for democracy. A total of 13 attributes emerged with transparency and accountability, rule of law, respect for human rights and dignity, freedom of expression and association, equality before the law, participation in decision making, political stability, equitable distribution of resources, social justice and fairness and free and fair elections capping the top ten. It was concluded that the attributes mirrored the theoretical models of democracy, with those fitting the classical liberal and social democratic models of democracy holding sway. In addition, they manifested the respondents' suggestions, not only for the strengthening of democratic reforms but also, for combating conflict and refugeeism in Africa.

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